Lacombe’s Midway Centre looking to attract tenants

Albertan economy, COVID-19 leading to difficulty finding suitors

Lacombe residents are eagerly awaiting more shopping options in the community and the Midway Centre is now fully serviced and ready to welcome new franchises to the community

Royal LePage Lifestyles Realtor Boyd Williams said the property located west of the city on the way to the QEii has had plenty of interest from developers and franchises — it is just a matter of finding management willing to buy in.

“Even before the virus, the economy and the state of business made it tough. We had developers ready to build buildings if we had tenants, but they weren’t willing to build without 40 to 50 per cent tenancy. That is our main obstacle,” he said.

Williams said they have made contact with many big-name realtors and they have all expressed interest in the locations.

“We are working on that, so there are possibilities out there for sure,” he said.

Williams said the trip-up comes from a struggling Albertan economy and the up-front costs required to open a chain restaurant or retail store.

“They have to pay a franchise fee, they have to put deposits down for leases and then they have to do all of the tenant improvements on their own. Sometimes tenant improvements can be $250,000 if you are building something like a Ricky’s. It really starts to add up,” he said.

Despite the economy, Lacombe residents should see the first service station open up in the next four to six months.

“The survey stakes are up and I believe we are moving forward with the service station and strip mall up on the top corner as you approach in,” he said.

Williams believes the project remains on “firm-footing”, with all of the necessary infrastucture in place.

“Everything is all serviced and ready to go. There is no problem with having the lots up and running,” he said.

There are ready to start to move some dirt. I would say you are looking at four to six months to have a service station up and running.

Williams said interested management can contact Royal LePage Lifestyles. Williams and his team have been in contact with many franchises and they are able to put interested applicants in touch.

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